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German Editors Discover the Heart of Minnesota's North Shore

Jun 08, 2024 05:59AM ● By Editor
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From Visit Cook County - June 8, 2024

In partnership with Explore Minnesota and Brand USA, Visit Cook County had the opportunity to host a German media familiarization tour, also known as FAM tours, for an afternoon in Grand Marais. 

This transatlantic rendezvous was made possible by a partnership between Explore Minnesota and Brand USA, capitalizing on Lufthansa's new direct flights from Frankfurt to Minneapolis-St. Paul. The purpose of the trip is to showcase the vast array of activities, interests, and landscapes in Minnesota to a discerning European audience with a penchant for luxury and travel.

The editors, hailing from prestigious publications like WELT AM SONNTAG Kompakt, Echo Zeitungen, and Kurier, embarked on a whirlwind tour of Minnesota's iconic landmarks within the Twin Cities metro and beyond. Visiting iconic locations like Grandma’s Restaurant, Vikre Distillery, OMC Steakhouse, and a walking tour of Canal Park before arriving in Grand Marais. 

 The group was led around Grand Marais by Linda Jurek, executive director of Visit Cook County and Kjersti Vick, marketing and public relations director. Brand USA and Explore MN partnered to bring airline representative Thomas Jachnow and three German media editors to Minnesota. In addition to the editors, Brand USA Representative Stefanie Feller joined the travelers.

“Thank you to Ruth Pszwaro of the Grand Marais Art Colony and Greg Wright and Tom Morse of North House Folk School for being gratuitous hosts of this group,” said Linda Jurek. The group had a tour of both campuses with an opportunity to visit with students and instructors. Followed by a walking tour of beautiful downtown Grand Marais led by Linda and Kjersti. 

While it was the first visit to the Midwest for many of them, it was clear that the editors left Grand Marais with a newfound appreciation for the untamed spirit of Minnesota's North Shore. And with their articles poised to reach millions of readers across Germany and Austria, it will be a delight to welcome new visitors to Cook County. 

“We have a distinct feeling that we will be seeing visitors from Germany in the future,” continued Jurek. “Thanks to Explore Minnesota and Brand USA for including us in this opportunity.” 

About the participants of the tour: 

  • Anja Francesca Richter, Editor at WELT AM SONNTAG Kompakt - (circulation: 521,636 copies and reach is 1 million readers): The national Sunday newspaper is targeted at readers with an affinity to luxury and travel.

  • Christina Kolb Editor of Echo Zeitungen / VRM Verlagsgruppe Rhein Main - Echo Zeitungen is part of the VRM – a large, established publishing house which comprises of major daily newspapers and advertising papers in the Rhine-Main region, Southern and Central Hessen. 

  • Anya Antonius Editor Kurier - Kurier is one of Austria's major quality newspapers (circulation: 239,349 copies and 540,000 readers) and is aimed at a well-educated and affluent readership. The newspaper can look back on a long history of development and is firmly established on the Austrian newspaper market.


About Visit Cook County 

Visit Cook County encompasses the northeastern Minnesota communities of Lutsen, Tofte, Schroeder, Grand Marais, the Gunflint Trail, and Grand Portage, commonly referred to as “the Arrowhead” and the “North Shore of Lake Superior”.  Grand Marais, Minn., has earned several national accolades -- most recently it was named America’s Best Small Lake Town by Travel & Leisure Magazine, USA Today’s Best Midwestern Small Town, Outside Magazine’s The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S. 2016, and Budget Travel’s 2015 Coolest Small Town in America. Rekindle your sense of adventure by exploring the Superior National Forest or paddling through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. Discover what makes the communities of Cook County, Minn. “Naturally Unforgettable.” Connect on social media using #donorthmn, Twitter @CookCoVisitors, Facebook, or Instagram @donorthmn. Learn more at

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